Hapus Dydd Gwyl Dewi

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St. David                                      © 3Di Associates Photography

 

It’s the beginning of March and I am currently spending some time in Wales. I’ve never been here for St. David’s Day before and I was rather hoping for a mass parade of welsh hats and daffodils. Maybe the mythological dragon could have reared its fiery head, but alas, it’s just a normal day in a quiet seaside town with a slight acknowledgement from the residents that this is a significant day.

What has St. David’s Day got to do with philosophy? Nothing much, other than every day is a day of philosophy. Philosophy isn’t all about what if’s and hypotheticals. Philosophy is about thinking, and it’s also about not thinking. It can be a silent, almost unknowing reflection on what this life of ours is all about.

Being here made me wonder whether there was an array of welsh philosophers. With the ever obliging Wikipedia, I discovered a range of names that I am looking forward to studying further. The first name alphabetically was Richard Ithamar Aaron who wrote two pieces that have caught my eye; “The history and value of the distinction between intellect and intuition” and “The Nature of Knowing”. I look forward to more internet searching to try and find some extracts from these works.

© 3Di Associates Photography

A Lonely Daffodil                                   © 3Di Associates Photography

 

In our opinion there certainly is a distinction between intellect and intuition, and both are extremely valuable to knowing our world and ourselves. The nature of knowing is so important, and particularly prevalent in a time when our Secretary of State is insistent that “knowing” is all as far as educating our next generation.

Yet here is an important distinction that is worth a moment of thought – an act of philosophising. Is knowledge important or is it the nature of the knowledge that is most significant? What is the nature of knowledge? What real understanding does knowledge give us? Isn’t what constitutes knowledge, with all its multi-faceted components, the real nature of knowledge rather than knowledge itself?

Today, as we said is St. David’s Day. What should you or I do with this knowledge? Buy a bunch of daffodils? Phone a Welsh relative? Learn about St. David? It’s what we do with the knowledge that’s important.

Today, many children across the UK as well as in Wales will be learning about St. David. They will be given the knowledge and they will probably be asked to recite or regurgitate it in some way, but what will they ultimately do with that knowledge – store it in their brains for future reference or do something immediately with their knowledge?

Yesterday, I decided that I would find out a little more about St. David too. I’m not sure yet what I am going to do with this knowledge other than post a few related photographs on this blog. What fascinates me more is that my determination to write something about St. David today has led to a journey of philosophy about knowledge instead of my original purpose – of writing about St. David. What I am now more interested in is how this sort of knowledge about St. David might be used by others and not about the actual factual knowledge itself. I’m intrigued as to how knowledge acts as a stimulus to learning and isn’t the end product of learning.

Enjoy the photos and have a think about the nature of knowledge. What is the real value of knowledge, and will the fact that St. David was born about 500 AD and taught across the land really be the most important thing that you or I learn today? Or will the photographs themselves ignite another spark that is completely unrelated to the Welsh Saint?

St. David's Shrine © 3Di Associates Photography

St. David’s Shrine                             © 3Di Associates Photography

 

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Hapus Dydd Gwyl Dewi.

Words by Dylan Thomas

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St. David’s Cathedral                   © 3Di Associates Photography

“On the last street wave praised
The unwinding, song by rocks
Of the woven wall
Of his father’s house in the sands”

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“Birds and the birds of the winged trees flying my name   
      Above the farms and the white horses
                  And I rose. “
© 3Di Associates Photography

Slate sculpture at St. David’s Museum              © 3Di Associates Photography

Rage, rage against the dying of the light.”

© 3Di Associates Photography

Alleged birthplace of St. David                      © 3Di Associates Photography

“Shall gods be said to thump the clouds
When clouds are cursed by thunder.”

© 3Di Associates Photography

© 3Di Associates Photography

“Lie still, be calmed, sufferer with the wound.” 

© 3Di Associates Photography

© 3Di Associates Photography

Once below a time,
When my pinned-around-the-spirit
Cut-to-measure flesh bit,
Suit for a serial sum
On the first of each hardship,

© 3Di Associates Photography

© 3Di Associates Photography

“There round about your stones the shades
Of children go who, from their voids,
Cry to the dolphined sea.”

 

© 3Di Associates Photography

© 3Di Associates Photography

“Light breaks where no sun shines;
Where no sea runs, the waters of the heart
Push in their tides.”

 

© 3Di Associates Photography

© 3Di Associates Photography

“In the sun that is young once only,
Time let me play and be
Golden in the mercy of his means.”

 

Inside St. David's

© 3Di Associates Photography

“They shall have stars at elbow and foot;
Though they go mad they shall be sane,
Though they sink through the sea they shall rise again;
Though lovers be lost love shall not;
And death shall have no dominion.”

 

© 3Di Associates Photography

© 3Di Associates Photography

“In the final direction of the elementary town I advance as long as forever is.”


 

© 3Di Associates Photography

© 3Di Associates Photography

Light breaks where no sun shines;
Where no sea runs, the waters of the heart
Push in their tides.”

© 3Di Associates Photography

© 3Di Associates Photography

 

Here In This spring

Here in this spring, stars float along the void;
Here in this ornamental winter
Down pelts the naked weather;
This summer buries a spring bird.

Symbols are selected from the years’
Slow rounding of four seasons’ coasts,
In autumn teach three seasons’ fires
And four birds’ notes.

I should tell summer from the trees, the worms
Tell, if at all, the winter’s storms
Or the funeral of the sun;
I should learn spring by the cuckooing,
And the slug should teach me destruction.

A worm tells summer better than the clock,
The slug’s a living calendar of days;
What shall it tell me if a timeless insect
Says the world wears away?

Dylan Thomas
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Seasonal Values – For Every Season: Courage, 13th December

13. Courage

 ©3Di Associates Art

©3Di Associates Art

“No matter how hard the past, you can always begin again”
Buddha

 

The Buddha

The Buddha

“Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.” Lao Tzu

 

Lao Tzu

Lao Tzu

“Faced with what is right, to leave it undone shows a lack of courage.”
Confucius

Confucius

Confucius

…………………………………………………………

Today we are offering three quotes and a final summary at the end.

Our most recent post on our main blog site, www.3diassociates.wordpress.com, explains the lessons that we can learn from other countries about how to transform education in this country. The needs and rights of our children to be given an education that leaves them with a will and desire to learn are integral to what we are aiming to achieve.

We have been considering recently just how much we have learned from the Eastern Philosophies throughout the centuries, and there’s some really positive education taking place in certain Eastern countries that we should seriously consider as viable for changes to education in the West. It takes courage to challenge the ‘norm’ or the ‘established’ but we must do this for the sake of the wellbeing of our children and young people.

In the midst of adversity, such as recently sent letters to head teachers from our Secretary of State that implies he has lost all belief in teachers to act professionally, we need to be both resilient and courageous.

It takes courage to stand up to bullies, both personally and professionally. Yet we must stand by what we feel is right. Some things are too important to walk away from. A future for our children is definitely one, and we need a collective courage to do right by them.

We also need to take this courage into our own lives. We need the courage to be considerate. We need the courage to believe in ourselves and not let others undermine our wellbeing. We need to have the courage to go outside our comfort zones to explore what we don’t know and challenge what we do know. We need the courage to speak up if we feel neglected or unloved. We need the courage to be silent when that is needed instead.

The quotes today have deliberately been chosen to show what sort of wisdom we can receive from the East if we properly open our minds to receive their insights. A quote is nothing if it isn’t considered, internalised and acted upon.

Today, we’ll leave you with a thought on courage from the Dalai Lama

Dalai Lama XIV

Dalai Lama XIV

“Every day, think as you wake up, today I am fortunate to be alive, I have a precious human life, I am not going to waste it. I am going to use all my energies to develop myself, to expand my heart out to others; to achieve enlightenment for the benefit of all beings. I am going to have kind thoughts towards others, I am not going to get angry or think badly about others. I am going to benefit others as much as I can.”